Thursday, 31 May 2012

"I Can't Get No Satisfaction"

Today you can take your pick of these 'twins' berthed in the marina at Manly. I'd like to be sailing into the blue yonder.

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Paolo's Box

I'm a sucker for a good story, and the post from yesterday and today link in very nicely. I was intrigued by the beautiful 'Paolo Soprani' that the musician was playing so did a bit of research. 

In 1863, an Austrian pilgrim returning home from visiting the Loreto sanctuary asked for hospitality for the night at a farmhouse near Castelfidardo. After having been refreshed, he sat down by the fireside and started to play a strange 'box'. This was the house of Antonio and Lucia Soprani and their sons. One son, Paolo, was interested in this musical box, which was a copy of the 'accordeon', patented in 1829 by Mr Demian of Vienna. There are differing tales of how Paolo obtained this box: some say that he awoke at night and studied the secrets of the instrument. The important thing is that from this little box, a few years later, the accordion industry would be born in Castelfidardo. In 1864 Paolo opened a small workshop and eventually moved to a bigger home in the centre of the town where he exhibited and played the accordion. His instrument was very popular with Italians who had emigrated overseas, and the sound of the "armonica" helped to ease their homesickness. In 1900 Paolo's company had a huge success at the World's Fair in Paris and he became a member of the Academy of Inventors of Bruxelles and Paris. He worked until he was 70, when his two sons took over, and Paolo died in his home in 1918 when he was 73 years old.

Tuesday, 29 May 2012

Anonymous #1

Spending the time in Maleny in the Sunshine Coast hinterland is always a joy. This small town lies in picture-postcard country about 90kms north of Brisbane, and has lots of those wonderful browsing shops, full of arts and crafts, curiosities and nic-nacs. Sitting in the late autumn sun was this wonderful musician entertaining the tourists and locals with his accordion, smiling and happy. He seemed so intent and passionate about what he was doing. I wish you could hear his music.

Monday, 28 May 2012


The viewing area of Brisbane airport was a hive of activity on Saturday morning when Boeing's new 787 'Dreamliner' touched down as part of a global publicity tour. The $195 million plane awed everyone who was there to watch it arrive. It will be introduced here on international routes next year by Jetstar, the low-cost airline of QANTAS. I have to admit, it looks very sleek and graceful. Time to book a trip I think.

Sunday, 27 May 2012

What A Difference A Day Makes

After the sombre mood and tone of yesterdays posting, here is a total contrast. The wind whipped up and blew the clouds off on their merry way out to sea, followed by a cold but clear day. Just perfect for a bracing walk on the beach. Even though the surf lifesaving patrol have their flag out, no takers today. Hope your weekend is going well.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

A Wet Cold

Heavy clouds crept in yesterday and took away our sun. The wind blew, the rain fell, and for a while it felt like winter.

“The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.” 
                                                                               ~Dr Seuss, The Cat in the Hat

Friday, 25 May 2012

Il Tramonto

As I was dashing out to my night class the other evening, I had a quick look from my balcony and was amazed to see such a lovely sky. At the risk of being late I grabbed the camera and took a few shots. I'm more than pleased with the results of literally a 'point-and-click' photo. By the way, the title of the picture is Italian for sunset...I am learning Italian at my night class!

Thursday, 24 May 2012

Abs of Steel

If you happen to pass by Kangaroo Point Cliffs you will come across these metal sculptures, a left-over from World Expo '88. All along this popular area you can find a walking/cycle track, great views of the city, and the cliffs are a perfect place for rock climbing and abseiling. Too much exercise for me this early in the day!

Wednesday, 23 May 2012

Into The Light

I've shown you the Story Bridge before, but when you travel along the river you get a different perspective, especially when you are standing outside at the bow of a City Cat, with the wind in your face! Catching the lowering evening sun made for a great silhouette of the bridge and part of the skyline.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

New Cat

Launched in October last year, this is the 19th and the newest City Cat. Named 'Spirit of Brisbane', it is dedicated to Brisbane's community spirit during one of its toughest periods, namely the tragic and devastating floods of January 2011. The Cat is decorated in distinctive colours; blue for the sky and the river, green for new growth after the floods; maroon for the Queensland spirit and yellow in recognition of the way the sun shone through the clouds to help dry up the flood waters. Inside the 'Spirit of Brisbane' there is also a permanent display of photographs taken during the flood clean-up. 

Monday, 21 May 2012

The PURRfect Way To Travel

Monday morning, the start of another week, and for some this is the way to travel to work. These are the City Cats, a fleet of 19 sleek craft that ferry people up and down the river at regular intervals. They are an efficient and leisurely way to start (or end) the day, with free WiFi, comfy seats and air conditioning. They are also one of the best and cheapest 'tours' to see the city sights from the Brisbane River. How do you travel to work?

Have a good week, everyone, and try not to work too hard.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

Perfect Sunday

This lady has the best idea; sitting in the sun, relaxing with a perfect view, and lost in her book. Hope your Sunday is relaxing and you find the perfect place to rest your mind.

You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend. ~Paul Sweeney

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Coastal Clouds

I don't take part in the 'skywatch' or 'weekend reflections' posts, but I think that this one ticks all the boxes. We have been having some fabulous weather lately, with almost two weeks of near perfect blue skies and plenty of sunshine. As nice as it is, I do like to have some clouds in my pictures to add some interest when taking a scene like this. The other day was perfect when I took my parents on a short 15 min drive to Wynnum. What better than fish and chips, overlooking a view like this?

Friday, 18 May 2012

A Leap of Faith

Like a puppet, held up and worked by strings, this kite-surfer takes to the skies. 

"The best surfer out there is the one having the most fun"
~ Duke Kahanamoku ~

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Holding On!

All you need to successfully kite-surf is a good strong wind, water and a lot of strength. The latter counts me out! This was taken in Moreton Bay.

Wednesday, 16 May 2012

Friends or Lovers?

What could be nicer than to dangle your feet in the warm sea whilst spending time with a friend or lover? It seems a wonderful way to idle away the time and it sure beats working! Hope your week is nice and relaxing.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

No Fear!

Give these guys something to jump off, a sunny day and an audience and they will happily show off. It doesn't look that safe, but the water was warm and clear and not a rock in sight.

Monday, 14 May 2012

Oh! I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside!

A popular British music hall song recorded in 1909 "Oh! I Do Like To Be Beside The Seaside" speaks of the singers love for the seaside, and their wish to return there for their summer holidays each year. It was composed at a time when the yearly visits of the British working-class to the seaside were booming. 

Fortunately, we don't have to wait for a trip to the seaside each year as we live right beside it. Yesterday it was Mother's Day, and as my mother (and father) is here visiting we took a leisurely drive to Redcliffe. As you can see, the weather was perfect, and perfect for a 'Stroll along the Prom'.

Oh! I do like to be beside the seaside
I do like to be beside the sea!
I do like to stroll upon the Prom, Prom, Prom!
Where the brass bands play:
So just let me be beside the seaside
I'll be beside myself with glee.

Sunday, 13 May 2012

Drovers (2)

If you stopped by yesterday you would have seen three of these guys standing around in the city.  I'm not so sure they'd get away with boiling their billy on the pavement! Here they are in their full glory almost under the shadow of Brisbane City Hall.

Saturday, 12 May 2012


One of the greatest successes of the streetscape of World Expo '88, was the series of white sculptures, 'The Human Factor'. The Drovers' are five (only 3 shown here) of almost eighty figures in the series - that portrayed people in everyday situations - all frozen in time, capturing the essence of life in Australia.

Originally created in fibreglass, many of the much loved 'Human Factor' were purchased at the end of Expo '88, but not all exist today. In 2005 'The Drovers' were recreated to preserve the sculptures that continue to serve as a reminder to the people of Brisbane the contribution Expo '88 made to the growth of the city.

Friday, 11 May 2012

Tree Skin

Eucalyptus or gum trees have the most wonderful bark. Not only does it have beautiful markings, it seems to mould itself around branches like a rubber coat...having wrinkles and folds like skin. I'm sure our skin wouldn't look as good being exposed to all that heat and sun!

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Dragon Watch!

My perception of the lake in the city botanical garden is that it is reasonably deep...that is until I saw this workman cleaning out some of the weeds and rubbish that has accumulated. Even with protective waders, it would feel jolly cold standing in that water. If you enlarge the image you might just see the water dragon sitting on the side watching him.

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Just When You Thought It Was Safe!

Need I say any more?

Actually this small area was having some work done along the coast so thankfully, normal service will be resumed as soon as possible!

Tuesday, 8 May 2012

Mr Percival

Any of you familiar with the Australian book and film "Storm Boy" will know straight away the reference to 'Mr Percival'. For those of you who don't know the story, Mike (aka Storm Boy) lives a reclusive life in the sand dunes on the coast of South Australia with his father. One day he comes across a pelican mother who has been shot and he rescues the three chicks. He names them Mr Proud, Mr Ponder and Mr Percival, and nurses them back to health. The pelicans are released back into the wild, but Mr Percival returns and a special bond is formed between child and bird. Unfortunately, Mr Percival is shot by hunters, and he dies.

As a child, growing up and living in the UK, I always dreamed of living in Australia and seeing pelicans. Little did I know that my dreams would come true. Mr Percival, above, was snapped at Bribie Island. 

Monday, 7 May 2012


I love watching pelicans with their silly walk and crazy beak. Bribie Island is always a good spot to while away time enjoying their antics.

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Green Shade

Perfect autumn weather. Wall-to-wall sunshine and blue skies. Dappled green shade to stop and stay awhile. 

Happy weekend!

Saturday, 5 May 2012

The One That Got Away

Standing in the warm, calm waters off Bribie Island, this fisherman shares space with some of the resident pelicans. I suspect that the pelicans are going to be the winners here.

Friday, 4 May 2012

Sailing into the Weekend

It's Friday and for some of you, the end of the working week. I'm working, but I hope that some of you get time to relax and to enjoy the weekend. This picture was taken recently at Bribie Island. We'll come back here soon for another look.

Thursday, 3 May 2012


I'm not one to enjoy pre-digested burgers, recycled fish and chips, or leftover salad! However, they did do a very, very good chocolate thick shake! 

Wednesday, 2 May 2012


When Sir Joseph Banks, an English botanist, set sail with Lieutenant James Cook on the first great voyage in 1768, little did he know that he would encounter many very unusual plants and species of vegetation never before seen in England.  He became a great collector banksia species, so named after him. The banksia species are native to Australia. This one is the golden candlestick banksia.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Roo..m For One!

Here's another one of the scrap metal kangaroo's that has taken up prime position on a bench. Is this Brisbane City's answer to singles dating, seeing as they have only left enough space for one person to while away the time?